Theme Parks in the UK (2023)

List of Theme Parks in the UK

  • Alton Towers
  • Legoland
  • Drayton Manor Theme Park
  • Thorpe Park
  • Dreamland
  • Lightwater Valley Theme Park
  • Chessington World of Adventures
  • Blackpool Pleasure Beach
  • Flamingo Land Resort
  • Oakwood Theme Park

Britain has some superb and innovative theme parks which provide an enjoyable day out for both residents and international visitors. From roller coasters to Lego to zoos take a trip through some of Britain's best amusement parks.

Alton Towers

Alton Towers, a renovated theme park in Staffordshire, is known for being the largest theme park in the UK. Alton Towers was originally being the estate of the 15th Earl of Shrewsbury. After its sale in 1924, a group of local entrepreneurs created Alton Towers Ltd and the site was eventually developed into the major theme park targeted at adrenaline junkies from the UK and beyond. The history of the site can be seen in the Gothic style hotel accommodations and their model railway built in 1957. The six major roller coasters include: Nemesis, Oblivion, Rita, Thirteen, the Smiler and the Galactica, gather visitors of all age ranges in search of excitement from across the country. During the Halloween season, the Scarefest puts a spooky twist on the Alton Towers with pumpkins and ghost-like characters lurking around every corner of the theme park.

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Legoland Windsor is a child oriented theme park located in Windsor, Berkshire, south west of central London. Legoland Windsor is known for being the most visited theme park in the UK and receives over 2 million visitors a year. Legoland was built in 1996 on the site of what used to be Windsor Safari Park. Visitors have the chance to experience various Lego-themed rides, models and workshops. One of the most popular attractions in the park is Miniland, which depicts famous cities and towns around the world in Lego form on a 1:20 scale. Visitors are recommended to take the railway system that travels through the different areas of the theme park at a relaxed pace.

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Drayton Manor Theme Park

Drayton Manor is a theme park built on the grounds of the former Drayton Manor in Staffordshire, England. The newly built Tamarin Trail allows visitors to go on an adventure where they will come face to face with inquisitive Tamarin monkeys and mischievous marmosets while they can also take a walk through beautifully tended gardens. The theme park possesses Europe's only stand up roller coaster, known for being highly intense and requiring higher height restrictions than other rides. This theme park is a must-see for families looking for quality time with their children at the Thomas Park and teenagers looking for thrills.

Thorpe Park

Thorpe Park, positioned between the towns of Chestney and Staines-Upon-Thames in Surrey, England, is a hotel and theme park featuring gigantic roller coasters and the long-awaited Ghost Train ride. In the 1930's Thorpe Park Estate was demolished and turned into a partially flooded gravel pit. Ready Mixed Concrete Ltd reconstructed the site into a water-themed theme park, hence lending to their slogan of the park being an "island like no other". The park's most notorious roller coasters include: the Swarm (the UK's first winged roller coaster), the SAW (based on the horror movie, SAW), and the Stealth that stands 205 feet tall and speeding up to 80 miles per hour. The Ghost Train ride has passengers encounter exciting live action sequences, 4D special effects and grand-scale illusions during a 15 minute ride.

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Dreamland, located in Margate, Kent, England, is an amusement park that is based on the classic British seaside funfair. The park site was used for amusement rides since the 1880's but the current name was not adopted until 1920 when the Scenic Railway Wooden Roller Coaster was opened to the public. The Dreamland site was originally a salt marsh, also known as the Mere, that was flooded until 1809 in which a seawall and causeway were built. Dreamland was closed down in 2003 and was reopened as a heritage amusement park, consisting of an array of vintage rides in 2015, to the surprise of many. Part of the reason for its reopening was the garnered support of "The Save Dreamland Campaign" by local residents. There are a collection of large scale historical rides as well as a charming Merry-Go-Round for romantics visiting the UK to experience. The Dream Pass Card is very popular to guests, allowing them to access rides unlimitedly and walk around the park cash free.

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Lightwater Valley Theme Park

The Lightwater Valley Theme Park, close to Leeds, is famed for having Europe's longest roller coaster called the Ultimate, which carries passengers along a 7,442 feet long steel track for a thrilling 7 minute, 34 second ride. The theme park is hidden in North Stainley, North Yorkshire, England and started its life as a small self-pick fruit farm in 1969. Lightwater Valley has a collection of over 40 rides consisting of high-thrill experiences such as the Ultimate and Falls of Terror, in addition to an array of more moderate thrill rides such as the Dragon Boats. One of the park's most popular attractions is the Apollo, newly opened in 2016, which carries visitors on an adventure above the treetops on a 25m high star flyer ride.

Chessington, World of Adventures (Southwest of Central London, England)

Chessington Resort includes the Chessington Zoo, holding over 1,000 animals, as well as Chessington World of Adventures theme park consisting of different areas styled on a collection of world cultures. Kids are captivated by the Chessington Zoo where they can view a variety of animals ranging from western lowland gorillas, sea lions to ferocious Sumatran tigers. The Chessington Zoo was opened in 1931 and the theme park was developed by the Tussauds Group in 1987. In the World of Adventures theme park, there are over 10 major areas such as Adventure Point, Mystic East, Mexicana and Pirates Cove. The Land of Dragons is targeted at children but also includes the intense spinning roller coaster, Dragon's Fury, built in 2010. Chessington's headline attraction, the Vampire, send visitors on a suspended roller coaster train ride in an atmospherically themed station.

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Blackpool Pleasure Beach

Pleasure Beach, close to the large cities of Liverpool and Manchester, is the UK's most visited theme park that prides itself in having had over 5.5 million visitors in one year. The park has the largest number of roller coasters in the UK with over 10 in the entire park out of which 5 are wooden. In 2014, it was voted to be the best amusement park in the UK. Many of the park's attractions are record-breaking, such as the "Big One", which was opened in 1994 and became the tallest and fastest roller coaster in the world at the time. Pleasure Beach originally was built in 1896 and consisted of little else but a Scenic Railway and the Hall of Mirrors. This major amusement park has a long history of providing entertainment to UK citizens of all ages.

Flamingo Land Resort

Flamingo Land, located in North Yorkshire, England, consists of a resort, amusement park and zoo for families to enjoy quality time together. The suspended flying coaster, the Hero, was opened in 2013 and is gathering popularity for delivering passengers on a side-by-side journey along a corkscrew track. The Cliffhanger is for visitors with nerves of steel, sending passengers rising into the air 180 feet and then falling in a gravity-defying free fall launch. Flamingo Land also has a collection of exotic animals such as giraffes, zebras, meerkats, chimpanzees and lions.

Oakwood Theme Park

Oakwood Theme Park incorporates five high thrill roller coasters: Megafobia, Vertigo, Bounce, Drenched and Speed. Oakwood Theme Park is located in Pembrokeshire, Wales, surrounded by beautiful nature and cozy villages all around. Oakwood Theme Park gives offers visitors a small park for BMX (bicycle motocross), wooden forts, 3D cinema, go-carts and a range of high-speed water-themed roller coasters. Megafobia has been rated among Europe's best rides by enthusiasts around the country.

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